I’ve made an effort to familiarize myself with the now seven candidates for the Washington State Republican Party (WSRP) chair’s seat that will be decided next Saturday. They clearly offer attributes that the party needs: passion, experience, connections, critical thinking skills and leadership ability. But Susan Hutchison stands out. Her background in fundraising, communications and leadership will be a huge asset to the Republican Party.
Susan has worn a number of hats over the years. In fact, her résumé just blows me away: news anchor, executive director for the Charles and Lisa Simonyi Fund for the Arts and Sciences, adjunct professor for Seattle Pacific University’s (SPU) MBA program, former candidate for King County Executive, member of the King County Independent Task Force on Elections, an appointment to the Governor’s Committee for Education, part of the NCAA Committee for Compliance at the University of Washington, and many board positions, including former board chair of the Seattle Symphony.
Susan’s experience in raising money for non-profits would be a huge benefit. This experience not only comes with connections but also know-how. Although those efforts are outside the party, she is known by long-time and well-respected Republicans as one of the best fundraisers around, a real natural at it.
Her communications experience would help the party connect with voters. She was a communications consultant for ten years and used her experience to teach graduate students at SPU about managerial communications. She knows how to apply this experience to candidates in the Republican Party, who often fall into pitfalls that the Democrats set for them. Furthermore, she understands that the party needs to effectively communicate its values. She drives these points home in her introductory statement at a recent statewide Republican Liberty Caucus board meeting (see website for video). Moreover, she understands that 21st century communication methods need to be implemented.
Susan’s service on boards has provided her with superb leadership credentials. For those that have experience on boards, you know that you must often find compromise for decisions on important issues and you need to realize that the decisions that you make don’t just affect the board but also members of a whole organization, who need to have a say. Furthermore, you need to delegate duties that draw upon a strong team with diverse talents. Susan understands these things and can provide effective leadership that listens to all viewpoints and factions within the party and is open to innovative strategies that accomplish goals.
For all of the above reasons, I strongly urge the WSRP State Committee to vote for Susan Hutchison for State Chair.